Sunday, February 26, 2012

MRI - check!

On Saturday morning, we woke up early to get over to Steinberg Diagnostic Medical Imaging Center for my first, but most likely not last MRI. We checked in at the Front Desk where we filled out paperwork, just like every other doctor's office. We only had to wait a few minutes until they called us back. They gave me a REALLY cute hospital gown and told me to put it on. I got my own little locker and got dressed. We then waited in another waiting room for about 10 minutes and they called me in. They had Tyson wait for me in the waiting room, but I thought I was only going to be gone for a few minutes so I didn't think anything of it. NOTHING could have prepared me for what was about to happen.
I walked into the room and it had a HUGE MRI machine. It was weird that I was so surprised by the look of it. It looked JUST like the machines do in the movies! I think I was imagining just going in and having something go around my head, like an x-ray when you get braces. I did not expect to see a full body, huge massive machine. That is SO intimidating!
They layed me down and put this really weird machine over my head. It connected to the side of my head and went over my face. They told me I had to hold completely still throughout the procedure. Like I said...I thought it would be five minutes. NO - I was wrong. It was 30 minutes! That is a REALLY long time to hold your head in one position. They put me in the machine head first, and left my legs out. I had headphones BLASTING music, but I could still hear the loud pounding sounds the machine was making. I can't imagine how loud they were if I took my headphones out of my ears! It was crazy!
About half way through the procedure, she pulled me out and put three shots into my arm. This is to send something up to my brain so they could see the brain with contrast. I didn't mind being pulled out half way through - I think it helped actually. I was going crazy in there! I felt like my brain was playing tricks on me and that I was spinning around in circles. I had to open my eyes every now and then just to make sure I was still alive! :) I hope I don't sound crazy and all of you people who have to get this done before, can agree with me!

When it was over, I told the lady I hope I NEVER have to do that again! She said I most likely will, but I should ask if I can have a pill or something before so I am a little drowsy. I think that is a pretty good idea!! To celebrate surviving, we stopped by the gas station and got donuts and chocolate milk... my fav! It was exactly what I needed!
Now we just wait for the results! We just need to know how big the tumor is so we know if a pill will cure it or if brain surgery is on the horizon. I have mixed feelings about both - but I know whatever happens, is a part of Heavenly Father's plan for me!

“The happiest people I know are not those who find their golden ticket; they are those who, while in pursuit of worthy goals, discover and treasure the beauty and sweetness of the everyday moments.”
Dieter F. Uchtdorf

a MUCH NEEDED date night!

With everything that has been going on, we really take our lives one day at a time. Sometimes even minute by minute! I can feel really good for a few minutes and then I get really sick and can't move for a few hours. It has been going off and on like this for a few weeks now, so I was SO excited on Friday when I was feeling good. I felt healthy and decided I wanted to do something FUN!! I felt like Tyson and I went from doing date nights ALL the time, to honestly staying home like little hoodlums and not doing anything EVER. Tyson has been SO patient with me and has been really good about not getting frustrated - so I totally felt like we both deserved a fun night, out of the house!!

We went to Applebee's for dinner...2 for $20 of course! It is like my favorite thing. Oriental Chicken Salad with extra dressing - it is so bomb. After dinner we played it old school and went to The Excalibur to play in their arcade area. Okay - it was SO much fun!! We had a blast feeling like children. We were seriously SO competitive and when the 5 year olds beat me at a game, I would seriously keep playing until I won. haha!! Tyson beat me at basketball, but I beat him air hockey. :)
We seriously had a blast getting out of the house! It felt so good to be out and about and to enjoy each other!! I really hope we can keep up on date night - even if I am not feeling well, it is a good idea just to get out of the house!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

The Small and SIMPLE things...

First of all, I am seriously obsessed with the stories that were shared on my last blog post!! My favorite thing about the stories was that EVERY story was different and each showed me how strong my friends and family are!! I love that it proved that EVERYONE has different trials in life and we all get to choose how we overcome them. Thank you for sharing your stories and testimonies ladies and Tyson! I know you helped me and I am positive you helped others too that read them.

Today I am SO grateful for the small and simple things in life. I think a lot of times I take things for granted and I forget about the things that matter. I am officially on FIVE different pills right now and my body is on FULL overload. I was looking at all of my pills and I decided that I am pretty much a grandma. I am going to go buy one of those pill organizers with the days of the week on them! It is crazy how confusing my medicine and eating schedule is these days. One pill I have to take in the morning and night with food, one I have to take in the morning and night without food, one I have to take without food, but not within an hour of my other pill that I have to eat without food, and the list goes on. I seriously had to make a schedule of when I take each pill and when I can eat.

On top of taking all of these pills, my body has decided it doesn't like them. I caught a horrible cold this past weekend while Tyson was on a guys trip, so I was pumpin the meds without him, trying to get well! Unfortunately, I wasn't better on Tuesday, so one of my procedures was cancelled due to my lungs being so tight. When they put you under anesthesia, your lungs become even more pressurized so they refused to put me under when I was in these conditions. It was a little bummer, but luckily I was able to reschedule for next Wednesday. I am really hoping my lungs are clear so this doesn't have to get postponed again!!
Today I was at work and I started throwing up. I couldn't help, but to be upset again. I am SOO over being sick!! It has probably been 4 weeks now that I haven't been 100% myself. It is pretty discouraging and extremely frustrating. I left work early and soaked in the bath for the longest time ever, took a nap and now I am laying in bed typing away.

I seriously can not tell you how grateful I am for the small and simple things in life! Not only being healthy (I cant wait for that day to come!!), but for my house, my car, my food, my job, my INSURANCE, my hot bath, my clothes, my testimony, my family, my husband, medicine, my tv, my laptop, chocolate milk, and make up. I am especially grateful for something that truly made my day yesterday and that was a note from Tyson's grandma, Grandma Pam. I got home from work and I saw the envelope on the counter, as I make Tyson get the mail at night because I am always too cold. :) I opened up the envelope and in it was this simple, yet extremely thoughtful and special card. It was a little note from Grandma, just letting me know she is thinking of us and praying for us. I seriously cried. How long does it take to write someone a note, to let them know you love them? Not too long. But how often do we actually do it? I know I am a HUGE slacker. Grandma, thank you for sending your love my way! It really did make my day and I cannot wait to start writing notes, to help people like you helped me.
Another small and simple act was today! Like I said, I haven't been able to keep anything down today and Tyson knows when I throw up, sprite and crackers are all I can really take. He walked in from work with Sprite and Crackers! I love that. I love that it was a simple act, that made me feel so much better. He is such a good doctor and I am grateful that he helps me feel better every day!
I hope that I can remember the things that matter most REALLY are the small and simple things! Thank you Grandma Pam and Tyson for helping me see that today. I love you both.

"Ordinary people who faithfully, diligently, and consistently do simple things that are right before God will bring forth extraordinary results." — Elder David A. Bednar

Monday, February 13, 2012

Faith in Every Footstep

"So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God." - Romans 10:17

In the bible dictionary it reads, "Faith is kindled by hearing the testimony of those who have faith." I read this at church the other day while in Sacrament Meeting and it really hit my heart! It is SO true - I truly believe my faith has grown because of others who have told me their stories! I have also heard from others that my story has helped others as well, gain more faith in times of need. I wanted to do a special blog post for anyone and all who read my blog. I absolutely LOVE when others share their stories with me. I love hearing about your trials and how you were able to overcome them, somehow, someway...especially when you didn't think you could.

I ask, that if you are reading this right now, that you will think about a time in your life that you have struggled. It could have been a health trial or friend trial, maybe a financial trial or death trial. Whatever it may be, I encourage you to leave a comment below and share your story. I truly believe as we share stories, that all of our faith will be strengthened.

Sharing my story on here has helped me so much! Not only has it been fun to document my life, so I will remember this crazy time forever, but it has helped me be positive and have a better look on my situation. I love that so many people have reached out and shared with me their stories of overcoming trials - and I hope that they and all of you will be willing to share stories on this post... So we can all be a little happier, a little bit more positive and have our faith grow.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Holy Hormones!!! (like Holy Smokes!)

It was a great Friday morning in the office. I was SO happy the week was over and I was eating a delicious yogurt with strawberries at my desk. My mom, sister and future brother-in-law were in town for a few wedding festivities this weekend, so I was pretty excited to get off work. My cell phone rang at 9am on the dot and the name that appeared on the screen was "Dr. Shapiro." I am use to getting calls from their office every day, but they are never that early in the morning... that is when I knew something wasn't right. I closed my office door and the nurse began to speak. She let me know that my blood tests came back from that morning already and they saw something that was not right. I literally hung up the phone and had a full on break down!! Don't get me wrong, what the nurse had said was NOT even that big of a deal, but I had just had enough for that week. It seemed like every day for the past two weeks, I got some sort of bad news.

I first got a call explaining my prolactin hormone levels are too high - which in most cases, means that I have a tumor on my pituitary gland. This tumor is very small on my brain and there are several ways that I will be able to treat it. My first MRI is scheduled in two weeks and we will have a lot more information after we receive those results. I have spoke to several people who have experienced this and everyone has had very successful treatments. According to what I know now (which isn't much!) there are two treatments. One is a pill that I will be on for the rest of my life to make the tumor smaller and to be sure it does not expand OR I have the option of surgically removing it. They actually would go through my upper lip, through the back of my nose and into my brain that way. When I heard this... I was fine! I just knew that everything was going to be okay!
I then found out from an ultrasound that I have a cyst on my uterus. I have NO idea why my other infertility doctor never saw this. It is almost completely blocking anything from going into my uterus, let alone allowing an embryo to impant! This was another reason we found out, why I may not have been able to conceive. I will be getting knocked out again in a few weeks, to get the cyst removed. When I heard this... I was fine! I just knew that everything was going to be okay!

On Thursday I received a call, letting me know that I had an imbalance of hormones. This is an easy fix though. I have been put on a 10 day pill, twice a day, which will get the hormones back to its correct levels. When I heard this... I was fine! I just knew that everything was going to be okay!

The following day, another phone call was received. It was almost like a joke! I told the nurse..."what NOW?!" My blood levels now showed a low red blood cell count, which means I am anemic. I have been anemic before, so I know how it feels and works. To treat this I may need a blood transfusion this week, an iron treatment or it could be as simple as iron pills.

I tried to remember the blessings we have had, but at that specific moment it was really hard to be positive. I felt like giving up and was extremely discouraged. Why is it, that EVERY day, they find something wrong with me? I have had shots, blood tests, pills, surgery, and sickness the past three weeks. I was not mad or upset that I have a tumor on my brain or a cyst on my uterus, I wasn't mad that my hormones are wacked or that my red blood cells are down. I was just upset as a WHOLE - the only word I could think of was FRUSTRATED. I just want to be a mom. I just want to be healthy. And I am willing to do anything it takes for that that to be possible.

I really just needed to talk to someone, so I called my two besties - Tyson and my mom. It is so awesome that I am able to see two different people's perspectives. Tyson was so positive and did not want me to be upset. He tried to help me see the blessings and to not be so sad. My mom told me through my tears that it was okay to cry and sometimes we just need to let it out. All of the hormones in my body right now REALLY don't help in situations like these! :)

On Friday night, we had a girls night as we baked and decorated for Lexie's bridal shower. We sat down and took a break and that is when I noticed something unusual about my feet. THEY WERE MASSIVE!! I was like... umm.. girls? ladies? What is wrong with me? LOOK AT MY FEET! I started freaking out and of course cried again, because I had the ugliest legs, kankles and feet in the world. The doctor had told me that I was retaining too much water, but I didn't know that I would look like an elephant! I literally raised my feet up all night and I am so happy to say the swelling went down.

A great friend yesterday told me she read a book about a gentleman who was diagnosed with a horrible disease. Much like me, he was upset and becoming very discouraged about what his life was becoming. That is when he decided he would allow a few minutes every morning to have a personal pity party for himself. He was able to feel bad or sad for those moments about his disease and health. Once a few minutes passed, he would pick himself up and stay positive the rest of the day. He would make every day a great day, but needed those few minutes to get his sadness out. I loved that because I feel like that is how I was on Friday. I just needed a moment to be sad. I just needed a moment to cry out my tears. We are truly the only ones that can decide if we are going to be sad or happy that day. I am going to choose to be HAPPY every day... even if I do need to have a little pity party each morning. :)

I love that! I love that only I can choose if I want to be happy. Only I can choose if I am going to let all of these silly things bring me down. Only I can choose to make the best of it and just go with the flow! I hope we all can be a little happier and a little bit more positive. When struggles come our way, it IS okay to cry - but maybe we can try to look at the blessings after we get the tears out, for that is when we feel the BEST!

“The only way to get through life is to laugh your way through it. You either have to laugh or cry. I prefer to laugh. Crying gives me a headache.”

Sunday, February 5, 2012


This week has been so crazy and I am so happy to say that I SURVIVED! On Thursday, I literally thought my life was over - turns out I was just super dramatic and when you are sick, you normally get better! :)

What an adventure Tyson and I have got ourselves into. Our alarm clocks went off at 4:45am on Wednesday morning. I hadn't slept that well the night before, so I popped out of bed a lot quicker than normal. I was so excited to get these eggs out of me! I felt huge and extremely uncomfortable. I had been looking forward to this day for three years! We were FINALLY going to have the opportunity to make a baby! It was dark outside when we got into the car and our nerves were out of control. We arrived at the Fertility Center at 5:30am on the dot. We were even there a few minutes before the nurse was there to unlock the doors! We checked in and they put a really cute bracelet on my wrist that had my name on it. They took me away and told Tyson just to sit tight and they would let him know what he needed to do.
I was introduced to the sweetest nurse, who took such good care of me that day. I put on one of those REALLY cute and flattering hospital gowns, put on little blue footsie covers, wrapped my hair up in a bun (of course) and put on a cap to cover my head. She wrapped me up in a hospital blanket and layed me in a recliner for a few minutes. They did a few tests and I soon got an IV on the top of my right arm. It was just fluids and nausea medication for after the procedure. I sat there for about 10 minutes, when they said, "are you ready?!" I was BEYOND ready, so of course I said yes! They put me on a bed and wheeled me into the "Procedure Room." The last thing I remember was the anesthesiologist saying, "okay! this is going to make you feel really good!" and I was OUT!

I woke up about an hour later in TEARS. The nurse was laughing because she said I was just crying and crying, but had the biggest smile on my face! I kept saying "I don't know why I am crying!" as the tears just strolled down my cheeks. I remember being uncomfortable, but nothing to really cry over. I am sure it was just the way my body was reacting to the anesthesia. This girl in the recovery room, who was also just waking up from a procedure kept saying, "I need Dr. Shapiro. Go get Dr. Shapiro! This girl is crying! You need to help her!" and I kept saying, "I don't know why I am crying! I am okay!" and we just went back and forth for a few minutes as the nurses were trying to calm her down and let her know that I was okay, and trying to calm me down from crying so much!

They also said I kept begging for Tyson. I kept saying, "I need my husband! Please go get my husband!" They eventually went and got him, and when he saw me shaking and with my face full of tears, he almost passed out! Poor guy!! They had to sit him down and give him some water and nuts to help him. We were seriously a mess. The nurses told me Good Luck when I am in labor! Tyson can't stand seeing me in pain I guess - which is the sweetest thing ever. Love him so much.

I finally got control over myself and Dr. Shapiro came and held my hand. He is the cutest thing in my life and has THE best bedside manners in the world. He squeezed my hand with both of his and looked me in my teary eyes and said "You did GREAT! I was able to retrieve 36 eggs!" His excitement made me so happy and I felt so blessed. 36 eggs! I know so many people who would have LOVED just to have 1 egg and here I had 36! I could not have been happier.

I went home that day and to say my recovery was easy, would not be the truth. I expected pain and bloating, but I did not expect the nausea and vomiting. I could not keep anything down for over 36 hours. Thursday was by far the longest day of my life. I woke up on Friday, DETERMINED to go to work. I got ready and kissed Tyson goodbye. I got into my car and just started crying! I was pushing myself too far. I knew I shouldn't be going to work, but I felt like I needed to as I had already missed Tuesday-Thursday. I had to stop by the doctor's office for blood work on my way to work and that is when they could tell something wasn't right. I was in a lot of pain and I was STILL not keeping anything down. They did an emergency ultrasound and blood work and came to the conclusion that I was dehydrated. They put me back into the room that I was in just 2 days earlier and hooked me up to an IV again. They pumped in the fluids once again and gave me anti-nausea medication as well. They seriously treated me like a PRINCESS. They took such good care of me and even the doctor came in and checked on me about every 20 minutes. The nurse who was taking care of me was incredible and she knew exactly what I needed. They didn't release me until I felt 0% nauseated and felt better.
Probably my favorite part about this whole week was the moment I realized I had become Violet from Charlie and Chocolate Factory. If you remember, she literally blows up into a huge ball after chewing gum from Willie Wonka - and that is now me! They told me that I would be bloated, but I did not know I would look 8 months pregnant. Doctor said I should start "deflating" this next week. I CANT WAIT!
Seriously, I am SO grateful for modern medicine! Not only so this whole procedure could be taking place, but also so they could make me feel better within 3 hours, by a simple IV. I am so grateful for my sister Katrina and brother Kyle and their families who brought Tyson and I dinner this week. I am so grateful for Mitch and Jesse who came over and gave me a blessing with Tyson. What an incredible blessing it is to have the Priesthood in our home! I am SO grateful for that special power. I am grateful for the phone calls and text messages from all of our friends and family members. I am grateful for my mom and dad who called numerous times a day to check in on me, as well as my in-laws who have cared so much. I especially am grateful for TYSON! Oh my goodness, this whole thing wouldn't have been possible without him. He took SUCH good care of me over the past week. I walk like I am 98 years old and he helps me get up off the couch, walked me to the restroom, got me a drink whenever needed, layed by me when I just needed to feel loved, and truly was at my beckon call. I love him and I am so grateful to have a husband like him. He spoils me to pieces.
We are so excited for the next few months! We have had a few extra hiccups come our way the past week, which has post-poned out implantation. Most IVF patients have their embryos formed and they do something called a fresh transfer, and the embryos are transferred only 5 days after fertilization. Because of a few things that have come up with my body (of course!) we have froze our 30 healthy embryos!! YES - 30! We are SO excited about it!! Out of 36 eggs, only 6 of them were not fertilized! ANOTHER blessing that we have seen! Here we have been trying to make ONE healthy baby for three years and the doctor was able to make THIRTY in one day! :) We could not be happier! Over the next few months, we will continue working with Dr. Shapiro in making me as healthy as possible so we can implant these babies as soon as possible!

"We have all experienced times when our focus is on what we lack, rather than our blessings. Said the Greek philosopher Epictetus, 'He is a wise man who does not grieve for the things which he has not, but rejoices for those which he has.'
- Thomas S. Monson